I’m in pieces, Mary Ann

I read him, but
he does not read me
since I got sad and shredded
and stopping the fun
but that’s alright
can’t stay angry with the creep

Lost marbles we all
think about
many colors
that caught the sun
when parties were a good thing
and not this stuff it all down
stuff it down one more time

He came by
(coming by)
every time the gin got to him
he said I’m in pieces, Mary Ann
won’t you fix me fix me
tape me up one more time

I said how strange you come
(he always comes)
just when I am heading out
one more time just once more
the tape and the iodine
and just one kiss


32 flavours

My face is pale, one could say vanilla
My neck like lavender, and fresh strawberry
Lower boasts of ripe muskmelons
My heart is dark: chocolate and cherry

Soft gelato, like mulled wine
I have no stomach for milquetoast
Coffee keeping straight my spine
Espresso or, in a pinch, French Roast

Roast chicken is a tasty dish
Occasionally broiled fish
In a pan with rosemary and thyme
Olive oil and a squeeze of lime

Some days I can be sour
Marinated in vinegar and lemon
Don’t be afraid-the mood will pass-and
Delight like sweet apples and cinnamon

Do you suppose a touch of rose
Would be tasty in a dish so sweet
A smattering of blueberry, memory of home
In the air, the scent of grilling meat

Yesterday I took the powder
Ran home and stewed some creamy chowder
I sat with salty tears in my eyes
The music was loud, I turned it louder

What flavour are you, on days like this
Your sweet embrace, your salty kiss
Endless french fries and midnight omelet
So wonderful, I will never forget

Mornings tasted like fresh mown grass
Evenings were slow and caramel
I imagine the winters were peppermint
Spring came stormy, with deep lament

Dipping our dreams in rich fondue
Shall we dance once more
smelling the smoky Gouda, and
Armani on you

Then have our coffee and cake
With icing
Red, white, and blue

I am (from)

Someone said, “Don’t obsess about the past.”

I said, ‘I’ll give you that, if you promise to look at it honestly sometimes’.

It holds the keys to the future.


I am from peanut butter on bread with sugar
and spaghetti, faithfully, every week
I am from peach pies and pot roasts
With potatoes, carrots and gravy and leeks

I am from long days and hard nights
Alone too much and confused about why I am here
I am from disappointed promises
Cruelty where I saw comfort in the masses

I am from heated back seat kisses
Hot summer nights with mysterious men
Hastily made oaths that vanished quickly
Birthdays that passed over like eidolon

I am from babies’ giggles and late night stories
Dreams of success and inventories
Blue skies and flat lands that stretched for days
Winter ices and eternal summers’ haze

I am from apple pie with ice cream
Bruised arms and scarred legs
Long nights we learned about falling in love
Long days we dreamed of them coming again

I am from people that worship our God
Some in a loving way, some rough shod
I am from somewhere it is good to be from
I long for new horizons that I can call ‘home’.

(2015, prompted by George Ella Lyon)

fears of the fathers

sailing through cherry blossom days
and crème brûlée nights
she wasn’t going to lay down her arms
for a mere brat of a boy
saving up her trinkets for later
giving him all her daydreams
and night sweats

he did not know the tango
but they moved through summer
amid a soundtrack of Ravel
and Aguilera
all second thoughts
stuffed under the mattress

back in the town onto which
they shook the clay from their shoes
all their dues, paid
if you took into account
their mothers’ latent wishes
and the fears of their fathers

Wild flower on asphalt


Lying in the middle of prairie flowers and wild
grasses-better than in the road-and how much do I owe
for loss of time money and how much it cost
in the long run. Sometimes we mourn and then find out
we were holding the knife that cut down our past

When we met I was in a shop buying a chicken, writing
a poem on the back of a grocery list. I want that mystique
that kept you coming around. A rose died-so what
you gave it to me-so what. I can buy dozens of flowers
but you-there is just one-you fell asleep on my breast

Our love is not like the others, cool as Eskimo nights
our love is crispy like chalupas – with a creamy center
driving through the days and weeks, trying not to
drown ourselves. I painted you with a touch of noir, making you
over with the look of Bogart I needed to navigate life

I get blue when I see what has become of you
so far from the happy times I barely recognize
the boy from 1989. Did someone do this to you
(did I ) or did you let it happen?
Every happiness flown away like fritillaries


The Gulf fritillary or passion butterfly (Agraulis vanillae), photo by The Photographer